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Pulkkinen lighting the lamp once again

Published Wednesday, February 13, 2013, 10:58 a.m. under 2012-13 RWC Reports
Teemu Pulkkinen

Teemu Pulkkinen (Credit:

It looks like an early-season slump was just a blip on the radar for Teemu Pulkkinen.

After struggling out of the gates with just eight points in his first 26 contests, Pulkkinen has rediscovered his scoring touch with Helsinki Jokerit of the Finnish SM-Liiga since late November, scoring nine goals along with 11 assists for 20 points in his past 24 games. All told, he has 28 points in 50 contests.

“Pulkkinen put in a great summer in terms of off-ice practicing and showed up in his best shape (of his career) by far, and he just couldn’t score,” said Red Wings director of European scouting Hakan Andersson. “Everybody was a little frustrated by that, most of all, himself, but he’s starting to produce. He’s starting to hum along nicely.”

The 21-year-old also struggled late last season with Jokerit, with just two goals and five assists in his final 17 games.

Compared favorably to Jari Kurri and Brett Hull because of his lightning release and knack for getting into scoring position, conditioning has never been a strong suit for the 5-foot-11, 183-pounder. Beyond goals and assists, Pulkkinen’s commitment to getting in shape in the off-season is perhaps the most important step in his development.

“We all know what he can do with the puck and we were all worried with his overall shape,” Andersson said. “But he put in a really good summer and everybody’s pleased with how he’s in shape.”

Pulkkinen, a fourth-round draft pick in 2010, is in the first year of a three-year entry-level contract with the Red Wings. Andersson said it’s too early to say whether Red Wings management will bring Pulkkinen to North America next season.

“If he takes off, makes the national team (for the IIHF world championship), all kinds of things can to happen,” he said. “We’ll just wait and see and take it from there.”

NOTES: Goaltender Petr Mrazek posted a 26-save win over St. Louis in his NHL debut while forwards Tomas Tatar and Joakim Andersson are getting ice time with Red Wings in a recent call-up, with Tatar getting 12 minutes per game in four contests and Andersson nine minutes a night in two outings … Center Alan Quine (Belleville, OHL) is running wild since a January trade and has 23 points in 12 games since joining the Bulls. Belleville is 31-14-3-3, third in the OHL … Defenseman Ryan Sproul (Sault Ste. Marie, OHL) is shooting the lights out with 19 points (five goals, 14 assists) in his past 10 games and has taken over the OHL lead in defense scoring despite missing 17 games with a broken arm. In total, he has 52 points in just 37 games … Right-winger Martin Frk (Halifax, QMJHL) had a slow start but you can’t argue with his production from November on. In his past 28 games, he has 21 goals and 28 assists for 49 points and is getting plenty of time riding shotgun with 2013 draft stars Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin.

Following is this week’s statistical report.


Ferraro, Landon Grand Rapids AHL PRO 47 15 17 33 31 -1 100
Andersson, Joakim Grand Rapids AHL PRO 36 10 17 27 55 +1 84
Parkes, Trevor Grand Rapids AHL PRO 30 3 5 8 33 +6 30
Lashoff, Brian Grand Rapids AHL PRO 36 2 4 6 23 +4 38
Tatar, Tomas Grand Rapids AHL PRO 44 19 20 39 44 +13 147
Almquist, Adam Grand Rapids AHL PRO 44 6 14 20 24 +3 59
Nicastro, Max Grand Rapids AHL PRO 9 1 1 2 5 +3 7
Raedeke, Brent Grand Rapids AHL PRO 28 3 4 7 36 -1 51
Sheahan, Riley Grand Rapids AHL PRO 45 13 12 26 25 +13 73
Aubry, Louis-Marc Grand Rapids AHL PRO 38 1 4 5 35 -1 51
Callahan, Mitchell Grand Rapids AHL PRO 42 6 7 13 82 +2 64
Jurco, Tomas Grand Rapids AHL PRO 45 6 6 12 14 -4 56
Fournier, Gleason Grand Rapids AHL PRO 16 1 2 3 23 0 12
Coetzee, Willie Toledo ECHL PRO 43 18 19 37 10 +1 184
Nestrasil, Andrej Toledo ECHL PRO 39 11 30 41 26 +17 112
Fournier, Gleason Toledo ECHL PRO 10 0 0 0 8 +5 11
Jensen, Nick St. Cloud State WCHA NCAA 30 3 20 23 12 +9 45
Marshall, Ben Minnesota WCHA NCAA 28 5 6 11 14 +10 46
McKee, Mike Lincoln USHL/JR-A USHL 30 2 13 15 232 +9 45
De Haas, James Penticton USHL/JR-A BCHL 44 5 18 23 19
Frk, Martin Halifax CHL QMJHL 40 23 36 59 66 +19 123
Ouellet, Xavier Blainville-Boisbriand CHL QMJHL 37 7 26 33 36 +15 127
Hudon, Philippe Victoriaville CHL QMJHL 51 12 17 29 46 +4 108
Sproul, Ryan Sault Ste. Marie CHL OHL 37 18 34 52 33 +3
Athanasiou, Andreas Barrie CHL OHL 51 22 32 54 26 +12
Quine, Alan Belleville CHL OHL 38 14 35 49 18 -1
Tvrdon, Marek Vancouver CHL WHL 18 8 14 22 16 +2
Nedomlel, Richard Swift Current CHL WHL 57 5 18 23 87 -14
Jarnkrok, Calle Brynas EUR SEL 47 11 24 35 12 -5 123
Backman, Mattias Linkoping EUR SEL 45 1 20 21 30 +8 55
Pulkkinen, Teemu Jokerit EUR FIN 50 12 16 28 41 +2 223
Marchenko, Alexey CSKA Moscow EUR KHL 42 4 5 9 6 0 45
Bodin, Rasmus HV-71 EUR-JR SWE-J20 13 0 1 1 10 -1 11


Paterson, Jake Saginaw OHL 38 19 13 4 2 2.48 .909
McCollum, Thomas Grand Rapids AHL 20 11 8 1 2 2.80 .898
Pearce, Jordan Grand Rapids AHL 4 0 3 0 0 4.32 .847
Mrazek, Petr Grand Rapids AHL 25 16 7 1 1 2.26 .916
Mrazek, Petr Toledo ECHL 3 2 1 0 0 2.02 .944
Pearce, Jordan Toledo ECHL 21 12 7 1 2 2.48 .909
  1. Perks says:

    Hard to believe that Ryan Sproul didn’t make the WJC Team Canada roster. I can’t help but think if they selected him and had Paterson play some games for Canada the outcome would’ve been different, but oh well, I like them sleeper picks. ;)

  2. Shawn says:


    Yeah, I’m sure we weren’t alone in thinking that Paterson should have played and would likely have played better. No doubt in my mind anymore that Sproul is a stud and in my mind, is pushing the list for #1 top potential in our system.

  3. Adam Banks says:

    No doubt Sproul is one of the top prospects in the system. I don’t think RWC would be willing to give that top spot to him, only for the reason that guys like Tatar, Jarnkrok and so forth are competing in pro leagues. If Sproul takes that production into the AHL, no doubt he will shoot right up the list.

  4. Shawn says:

    No, certainly not #1 in RWC list, but but he’s pushing for #1 potential in the Wings’ system in my opinion. The RWC list is a mix of potential, likelihood, and readiness.

  5. Mike says:

    Just curious, how’s Jensen’s progress been this year? His team is a solid contender and he’s having a decent year, so I’m wondering where you see him landing? Seems like guys like Sproul, Ouellet and Almquist have all skipped Jensen in the prospect rankings, even though he’s been steadily improving since being drafted.

  6. RW19 says:

    Mike – my take on Jensen is that he is a decent-to-good prospect. It’s two years in a row that one of those US College publications lists him as a top 10 defenseman. I haven’t seen much of him in terms of watching a full game on TV, but I have read quite a bit about him and what you read a lot is “responsible” “see ice well” and “good puck mover.” He doesn’t appear to have a physical side, say like Ouellet.

    I am not sure if this is the year that the Wings have to sign him and he goes to GR, but with his skating, smarts and being a RH shot (big org need)- there is always a chance he could turn out to be like a bigger Tobias Enstrom – a solid, smart puck mover.

  7. SBURR says:

    I noticed on Hockeys Future website a lot of the prospects have gone up in ranking. some depth in the next couple of years which is good to see!

    On another note I would think based on Babcocks quotes this past week Filpula will be gone in the summer. So the more Tatar and Nyquist play this year the better. Really like what I am seeing of Tatar so far, speed hands, back checking and a nose for the net.

  8. RICK says:

    What did Babs say about Filpula that makes you believe he wont be back next year? That would be a huge loss for the wings. Filpula is very underrated in my opinion Quick Launch

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